The Queen & Kate Middleton must follow this strict rule when flying – but William does not

The Queen and the rest of the Royal Family are globe-trotters, frequenting far-off destinations frequently as part of their duty. However, unlike your average travellers, the Royals have a list of rules they must follow when jetting off.

“Often walking down a staircase is the grand entrance to a room or event and is the first impression with all eyes and photos on you.”

This is not the only rule that women must follow when walking downstairs.

The Royal women must also attempt to keep their toes pointed as they walk.

They are allowed to rest their hand upon bannister or rail for extra support if there is one, but if not they must jeep their hands at their sides.

However, should a male member of the Royal Family joined them, he may assist her by offering his arm as support.

These rules are all supposed to help members of the family maintain poise.

Despite the guidelines, departing an aircraft with grace at all times is easier said than done.

In the past, Queen Elizabeth has battled the elements while doing so, which has left her red-cheeked at times.

Strong winds when disembarking from a flight in New Zealand in 1963 caused an embarrassing moment for the Queen.

In his book “Queen of the World” author Robert Hardman recalls the moment.

“During the 1963 tour of New Zealand, a gust of wind raised the Queen’s skirt in the capital and created ‘Windy Wellington’ headlines around the world,” he wrote.

“The photographer Reginald Davis captures the moment for the British press – ‘it only showed her slip’ – yet when he submitted it for the 1963 Photographer of the Year Awards, the judges refused to accept it, on grounds of taste.”



Virgin Voyages unveils new destinations for luxury Valiant Lady ship

After a year of minimal travel opportunities, and cruises being halted, the new offering promises holidaymakers a chance to explore some of the Caribbean’s most stunning locations.

Though the ship will begin its career sailing the Mediterranean when it launches in May, come winter time it will sail holidaymakers to hotspots including Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Mexico and St Croix.

The winter itineraries span eight- and six-night sailings, with plenty of port stops along the way.

Eastern Caribbean sailings will call in Puerto Plata, San Juan, St. Croix and The Beach Club at Bimini.

READ MORE: Tom cruise charters two Hurigruten cruise ships



Italy holiday hotspots tighten tourist rules as global COVID-19 cases rise

Many Britons have opted to jet off to Italy this summer, with the nation currently on the UK travel corridor list. At the time of writing, Italy is allowing Britons to enter the country as long as they follow some of the guidelines set out.

However, as coronavirus cases begin to creep up in nations around the world, the country has tightened some of its entry requirements.

In particular, the Italian island of Sardinia has increased its rules and regulations for foreign arrivals.

Though Britons are free to enter Italy without a coronavirus test or declare a reason for travel, things are slightly stricter in the Mediterranean Island.

“If you are travelling to the island of Sardinia, you are required by the local authority to demonstrate that you have received a negative COVID test in the last 48 hours, or agree to take one when you arrive in Sardinia,” warns the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO).

READ MORE: British Airways launched £35 seat sale

Passengers will also face a mandatory temperature check.

Temperatures must be below 37.5 degrees.

Similarly, some arrivals heading to mainland Italy will also be required to take a compulsory COVID-19 test.

In response to this, the FCDO has issued an updated warning for holidaymakers, particularly those who are transiting via some of the regions facing new rules.

The FCDO explains: “Entry to the country is still forbidden for visitors who have stayed in or transited through a small number of listed countries in the 14 days before arrival.

“If you have been outside the UK in the 14 days before your planned date of travel to Italy, you should check the current list of affected countries.”

For example, arrivals from Bulgaria and Romania will face 14-days of isolation.

Meanwhile, arrivals via Armenia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Chile, Kuwait, North Macedonia, Moldova, Oman, Panama, Peru, and the Dominican Republic are banned unless Italian citizens.

The FCDO adds: “You will need to self-isolate if, in the 14 days prior to your arrival in Italy, you have stayed in or transited through a country where Italy continues to require self-isolation. If these conditions apply to you, then you must report promptly to the local health authorities and self-isolate for 14 days.”

Furthermore, strict coronavirus testing is in place for travellers coming via some EU countries.

The FCDO explains: “From 12 August, travellers arriving into Italy from Malta, Spain, Greece and Croatia must undertake a compulsory COVID-19 test.

“If you are tested for Coronavirus in Italy and receive a positive result, then you will be held in a quarantine facility until two consecutive negative tests have been recorded.

“This may be a lengthy process.”

However, those arriving directly from the UK are exempt from this new regulation.

“Entry to Italy from the UK is permitted. You no longer have to justify your reason for travelling,” continues the FCDO.

Holidaymakers must download and complete a self-declaration form from the Italian Government ahead of travel to Italy.

“You must provide this to your airline/transport provider, or to the border police if you are stopped for checks,” states the FCDO.



Portugal's Madeira archipelago is a soothing spot in the rugged waters of the Atlantic

Just 35 miles long by 13 miles wide, this subtropical archipelago is a stunning slice of Portugal; a place that’s as much for the soul searchers as the sun seekers, as we discovered.

Due west of Morocco, it is closer to Africa than Europe and it’s part of a quarantine-free travel corridor, while the mainland of Portugal requires a fortnight’s Covid self-isolation on return to the UK.

It’s superb for walking, has a diverse array of flora and fauna and a charming capital city, Funchal. This year-round destination offers an eclectic mix of natural wonder and local tradition.

 

We were based at the seafront VidaMar Resort Hotel, on the edge of Funchal. With pools, sprawling gardens and superb views, it was hard to drag ourselves away. But we did – to discover more of this wonderful island on a trip out to the hidden cove of Faja dos Padres.

Faja is the rocky debris which slid down the cliffs and formed a village that became a summer retreat for Jesuit priests. It’s also here that the production of the “fortified” Madeira wine began.

You can get a glimpse of how the Jesuits lived by visiting some reconstructed houses and wandering through the narrow alleyways.

Access to Faja is via a cable car, offering stunning views across the coastline. A colourful counterpane of kitchen gardens lies below; teeming with everything from passion fruit used

in the local honey rum poncha, to fennel – or funcho – to use the Portuguese word, which gives Madeira’s capital

its name.

Before long we are at the Faja dos Padres seafront restaurant and sampling wonderful produce. The black scabbardfish may have looked like a monster from the deep but it certainly tasted good. As did the most understated of seafoods – fresh limpets fried in butter and served in their shell.

We headed back into Funchal for another cable car ride, up to Monte Palace. The gardens are bursting with colour and fragrance; from birds of paradise to the prehistoric cycads, every bloom seems to know its place. The gardens are a tribute to the palace’s masterful botanists.

With a variety of influences from neighbouring Africa and garden designs from Asia, as well as colourful flowerbeds that resemble tiles, the gardens are quite simply heavenly.

Now, what goes up must come down and to experience the full Monte there is only one way to descend… in a basket.

In a nod to the island’s wicker trade, two men in boater hats push you down a hillside road in a toboggan-like run of 1.24 miles at speeds of up to 30mph. Quite a thrill!

Back at the hotel we take things easy, first on our sea view balcony and then at the Thalasso spa. With a number of al fresco restaurants such as Chalet Vicente, serving piri piri chicken and other traditional dishes, guests needn’t go far to enjoy a taste of Madeiran life.

Next morning we’re up early to meet Madeira Experience tours for a guided walk through the levadas – a series of intricate man-made waterways that trickle along the walking trails and into waterfalls.

Walkers and cyclists can take in stupendous views over the island’s lush forests. A blissful silence is only interrupted by the sweet song of the small firecrest birds. The walks take you through woodland fragrant with bay laurel, used in many kitchens on the island.

Even its sprigs are used to flavour the traditional espetada beef skewers.

There’s a special bond between the locals and these woods which give the island its clean tropical air – the very thing that first drew tourists blighted with bronchial afflictions to the region.

We headed down to the bay of Seixal – past unusual rock formations that look like small windows – to the island’s small black sand beach and a bracing dip in the natural pools.

The shifting lava has formed intricate channels which explorers can descend through at the São Vicente caves.

The day ended with a yoga class at the base of the Laurissilva Forest as 
the sun hit the peaks.

We felt totally at one with nature. Just like Madeira itself.

 

THE KNOWLEDGE

British Airways Holidays offers seven nights half board at the VidaMar Resorts from £529 per person, departing Heathrow on selected dates in October. Book by September 30 at ba.com/madeira. More info: visitportugal.com



British Airways launches £35 seat sale to Italy, Greece, Denmark and more

British Airways is luring back passengers with one million seats on offer for just £35 a ticket. Tickets are on-way and span holiday destinations in Italy, Greece, and Denmark, as well as some domestic routes in the UK too.

Destinations include Athens, Bologna, Copenhagen, Dublin, Glasgow, Milan, Venice, Newcastle and Naples.

However, holidaymakers hoping to snap up a deal will have to do so by September 22.

Seats are available on flights departing right up until March 2021.

For customers hoping to snap up a business class seat, the airline is also offering a Selection of Club Europe, British Airways’ European business class offering, at a reduced price.

READ MORE: Flights: How important are face masks in the fight against COVID?

The Club Europe sale spans 60 routes.

These include £119 return to Dublin, £129 to Krakow, in Poland or Luxembourg, £149 to Prague, in the Czech Republic, and Vienna, in Austria, or £169 to Nice, France.

Seats in Euro Traveller are also available on routes to Dalaman, in Turkey, and Larnaca in Cyprus, amongst others.

Customers should book by 30 September to benefit from the sale.

For Britons seeking something a little further afield, the British flag-bearer is offering reduced holidays to some Caribbean destinations too.

Customers can save up to £100 on select Caribbean or Cancun flight and hotel packages.

Bookings must be made between 18 and 22 of September 2020 for journeys up until the end of March 2021.

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All tickets are subject to the British Airway’s flexible booking policy.

This means customers can benefit from no change fees or free voucher exchange if they wish to change any bookings made up until the end of September 2020 for all departure dates before the end of August 2021.

Andrew Brem, British Airways’ chief commercial officer, said: “It is exciting to be able to offer our customers a great range of low fares on travel to a large number of short-haul destinations, alongside our impressive sale prices.

“Travellers can book with absolute confidence knowing we are operating with stringent safety measures in place and that should anything crop up they can change their plans incurring no change fees, thanks to our flexible booking policy.”

It follows suit of a number of UK airlines who have also launched sales in a bid to increase passenger numbers.

Earlier in the week, Ryanair launched a tempting sale with some seats on offer from just £9.99.

The Irish-carrier released 100,000 seats to destinations such as Pisa, Bologna, Krakow and Alicante.

However, tickets were only available on flights until the end of September, which means Britons heading to regions not on the current travel corridor list face 14-days of mandatory quarantine on their return home.

In a similar vein, TUI slashed the prices of holidays, however, they focussed on “safe” destinations.

Travel to regions in Turkey and Cyprus, both of which are on the UK travel corridor list, were dramatically reduced in cost.

A seven-night all-inclusive holiday to Turkey’s The Land of Legends rest in Antalya is down from £1,296 per person to £719.

Meanwhile, seven nights at The King Jason in Paphos, Cyprus, is down from £1,301 per person to £568 per person.



How different countries around the world house and honour their heroes

King Tut's tomb

King Tut’s tomb lay untouched for 3,000 years before it was uncovered (Image: Getty)

King Tutankhamun

Valley of the Kings, Egypt

King Tut’s tomb lay untouched for 3,000 years until British archaeologist Howard Carter uncovered it in 1922. It was almost intact – the best-preserved tomb in
the Valley of the Kings.

The focus of mass tourism, combined with the humidity and dust, left the tomb of the Boy King in a sad state. So in 2009, a conservation effort began to restore it and it’s now equipped with an air filtration system, barriers, viewing platform and the wall paintings have been restored.

Meanwhile, Cairo’s much-delayed Grand Egyptian Museum (a replacement for the century-old Egyptian Museum) is finally set to open in April next year and will feature the tomb’s treasures including 
the death mask, displayed in the exact order Carter found them.

Princess Diana

Thousands of mourners paid tributes to the ‘people’s princess’ (Image: Getty)

Princess Diana

Althorp Estate, Northamptonshire

Diana’s tragic death in 1997 prompted thousands of mourners to travel to Buckingham Palace to pay tribute to 
the “people’s princess”.

Diana's resting sight, Oval Lake at Althorp House

Diana’s resting sight is on a tranquil island in the Oval Lake at Althorp House (Image: Getty)

But, fittingly, for someone who lived most of their adult life in the spotlight, her final resting place is out of sight, on a tranquil island in the Oval Lake at Althorp House, her childhood home which has been in the Spencer family 
for 19 generations.

Few are allowed to set foot on the island, but well-wishers are permitted to visit the memorial temple beside the lake. 

MumtaZ Mahal

Taj Mahal, Agra, India

By the orders of the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan, this white marble mausoleum was built to house the remains of his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal, who died giving birth to their 14th child in 1631.

Constructed between 1632 and 1653, the architectural masterpiece, with its spectacular 115ft marble dome built over the tomb, is now a Unesco World Heritage site.

According to the Black Taj myth, Jahan, who was obsessed by symmetry, had intended to build a mirror-image of the monument for himself, albeit in black, on the other side of the Yamuna River and connect the two by a bridge. 

Taj Mahal India

The white marble mausoleum was built to house the remain of Muntaz Mahal (Image: Getty)

Lenin’s Mausoleum

Moscow, Russia

Located in Moscow’s Red Square, Vladimir Lenin’s Mausoleum is one of Russia’s most popular, yet controversial, tourist attractions.

In his will, Lenin, inset, requested he be buried, and while the Russian government planned to carry out his wishes, the grieving public wouldn’t have it, apparently sending 10,000 telegrams pleading for their great leader to be preserved for generations to come.

 

Lenin's Mausoleum

Lenin’s Mausoleum is one of Russia’s most popular tourist attractions (Image: Getty)

They got their way and visitors still form long queues to enter the dimly lit memorial hall to view the Russian revolutionary, frozen in time for more than 90 years in the glass sarcophagus.

The modern mummy is lit with soft, warm light to make it appear more lifelike and temperatures are kept at a constant 16 degrees.

Every week, a mild bleach is applied to fight the fungus growing over his skin. Every 18 months, his clothes are carefully washed and ironed.  

 

Mao Zedong

Beijing, China

Chairman Mao’s embalmed corpse lies on public display in a crystal cabinet, draped in a red flag emblazoned with the hammer and sickle, inside a memorial hall in Tiananmen Square.

The founder of the People’s Republic of China, left, known for his communist theories and who died in 1976, had requested cremation, but officials, as well as his widow, decided he would join the likes of Lenin in being embalmed and exhibited.

There is always a lengthy queue to see him in his final resting place.

Although the line may seem impossibly long, it is continually moving as guards in white gloves wave visitors through, forbidding them to stop inside the hall. 

 

Mao Zedong

Mao’s embalmed corpse lies in a crystal cabinet in Tiananmen Square in Beijing (Image: Getty)

Napoleon Bonaparte

Hotel des Invalides, Paris

An extract from Napoleon’s will reads: “I wish my ashes to rest on the banks of the Seine among the people of France whom I so much loved.”

The first emperor of France got his wish and can be visited in the Hotel des Invalides, in the heart of Paris’s 7th arrondissement, which was built by Louis XIV in 1670 to provide accommodation for wounded soldiers.

Napoléon Bonaparte's tomb

Napoleon’s red sarcophagus stand upon shows episodes from his reign (Image: Getty)

Napoleon had visited troops here and, in 1840, a tomb was built in the chapel to house his remains.

Forty years later, after excavation work, he was finally laid to rest in the towering Dome Church in a red sarcophagus in the circular crypt.

The mosaic floor it stands upon shows episodes from Napoleon’s reign. 

Bob Marley

Nine Mile, Jamaica

When Jamaica’s most famous son was lost to cancer in 1981 aged 36, a mausoleum was erected just a few feet from his childhood home in Nine Mile in the mountains of St Ann. He was buried with his favourite red guitar in a simple marble tomb.

A tour takes visitors through the house where they get to stand on “Mount Zion Rock” where Bob, left, used to meditate, and of course, there’s also a reggae-themed gift shop.

In 1991, the Jamaican government declared the singer’s birthday, February 6, a national holiday, and since then fans have gathered for an annual music festival near his grave. 

 

Bob Marley singing

Bob Marley died from cancer in 1981 (Image: Getty)

Bob Marley's Tomb

Marley was buried with his favourite red guitar in a marble tomb (Image: Getty)

Jim Morrison and Oscar Wilde

Pere Lachaise cemetery, Paris

Being buried alongside some of the world’s greatest writers such as Oscar Wilde, Marcel Proust and Honore de Balzac in the Pere Lachaise cemetery would have pleased Jim Morrison greatly.

The charismatic frontman of The Doors, who died in a bathtub, aged 27, was a prolific reader, his songs heavily influenced by poets and philosophers.

 

Jim Morrison's grave in Pere Lachaise

Morisson was buried among some of the world’s greatest writers in Pere Lachaise cemetery (Image: Getty)

Oscar Wilde's grave features a winged male figure

Oscar Wilde’s grave features a winged male figure whose exposed genitals were covered by a fig leaf (Image: Getty)

Finding Morrison’s grave can be quite tricky among the alleyways of tombs here (he’s in Division 6) – and it wasn’t until 10 years after his death that a proper headstone was installed. The bust was stolen in 1988. The grave was renovated and the headstone removed in 1990. Following defacement over time, barricades were erected in 2004.  

Oscar Wilde’s grave has had its fair share of controversy, too. It features a winged male figure whose exposed genitals were covered by a fig leaf after complaints. 

The grave is also covered in lipstick kisses, a ritual started in the 1990s and frowned upon because of the damage caused cleaning them off.

There’s now a €9,000 fine if you’re caught puckering up to the Irish poet and playwright. 

Christopher Columbus

Seville, Spain

Seville’s gothic cathedral houses the ornate tomb of Christopher Columbus, inset right, who was reinterred there in 1898. However, Santo Domingo, capital of the Dominican Republic, also claims to hold the explorer’s remains and, 500 years after his death, there’s still debate over his exact burial spot.

His body began its final rest in Valladolid, Spain, where he died in 1506, before it was moved to Seville by order of his brother. In 1541, his remains were then transferred to the Cathedral of Santa Maria in the Dominican Republic.

 

The ornate tomb of Christopher Columbus

The ornate tomb of Christopher Columbus was reinterred in 1898 (Image: Getty)

When Spain lost control of the Dominican Republic in 1795, they were moved to Havana, Cuba.

One hundred years later, they made their final voyage back to Seville cathedral. However, in 1877, a box of bones was discovered in Santo Domingo inscribed with: “The illustrious and excellent man, Don Colon, Admiral of the Ocean Sea”.

Despite DNA tests of the remains in Seville, the mystery is unsolved or completely resolved, depending  on whom you ask.



Walks near me: Best walks near Brighton – from coastline to countryside

Stanmer Park Circular Walk

For those hoping to immerse themselves in stunning English countryside, the Stanmer Park Circular was is ideal.

Though it takes an average of four hours to complete, walkers will be rewarded with plenty of picturesque moments along the way.

The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, trail running and cycling.

It is classed as good for all skill levels.

How far is the Stanmer Park Circular walk?

The Stanmer Park Circular walk spans 14.2 kilometres.

How do I get to Stanmer Park?

Stanmer Park can be reached by car from Brighton in 18 minutes.

The park can also be accessed by train. The journey takes around 14 minutes

Is there anything else nearby?

A mix of hills, woods and open space makes for a perfect picnic day out.

Pack some snacks and a blanket and refuel mid-walk.

Alternatively, pop into the nearby Stanmer Tea Rooms for a well deserved light bite.

Poynings and Devils Dyke

Boasting stunning wildflowers and vast expanses of greenery, the Poynings and Devils Dyke is a trail for the whole family.

Classed as an easy walk, this route is good for all skill levels and is primarily used for hiking, walking and running.

According to legend, Devils Dyke itself is said to be the place where the Devil and his wife are buried.

The chalk downland is the deepest dry valley in the country.

The area is also home to an array of wildlife.

How far is the Poynings and Devils Dyke walk?

The Poynings and Devils Dyke walk spans 3.7 kilometres.

How do I get to Devils Dyke?

By car, it takes approximately 27 minutes to reach Devils Dyke from Brighton central.

It can also be reached by bus, though connections will be necessary.

Is there anything else nearby?

Not too far from the walk is Saddlescombe farm, a working farm hamlet complete with donkey wheel.

Though some areas of the farm are restricted, members of the public can still journey through some areas of the farm which are signposted.



Travel money: Currency expert warns of 'secret costs' – always check this before purchase

The coronavirus pandemic has caused widespread chaos across the travel sector. Currently, travel corridors are largely dictating where Britons can holiday abroad without facing quarantine restrictions on their return to the UK. As well as quarantine measures, Britons are still having to remember key items when they travel abroad such as foreign currency.

For those planning their next trip abroad, the prospect of packing, remembering masks and organising travel money can seem a bit daunting.

And now, one currency expert has warned travellers what they need to look out for when buying travel money.

Founder of Currensea James Lynn spoke exclusively to Express.co.uk about travel money options for travellers.

He said: “When evaluating travel money options, whether you’re out at a Bureau de Change while you’re stuck abroad or even before you go, look really carefully at the small print.

READ MORE: Travel money: Why holidaymakers should pay using local currency abroad

He continued: “The first thing is to try and avoid using cash and ATMs where possible.

“It is much cheaper to spend on a travel debit card.

“For instance, Currensea can save customers over 85 percent in fees compared to a normal high street bank.

“Try and use some sort of travel debit card and avoid that cash.

“The second reason to avoid using cash is, aside from the perceived health risks…. you’ll pay more for the cash in the first place and you’ll be left with foreign currency at the end of the holiday.

“When you do come back from holiday, you will then have to change it back again, taking yet another charge on the FX.”

Currensea is a travel card that links directly to your bank account, eliminating the hassle of juggling currencies with prepaid cards or different accounts.

The card automatically saves travellers 85 percent on bank charges anywhere in the world.

For anyone planning to book a holiday online, Lynn also offered advice on what to look out for to avoid fraudsters and scams.

“The main advice I would give is don’t pay by bank transfer,” he said.

“Paying by bank transfer leaves you wide open to fraud. You won’t be protected and it’s extremely hard to get money back after that.”

He added: “If something sounds too good to be true, it often is too good to be true.”



How to travel abroad by yourself: Top tips for travelling abroad on your own

Holidays abroad can be some of the best moments of your life – even if its somewhere you’ve been to plenty of times before. But there may come a time where you may find yourself travelling by yourself without the comfort of family or friends. While this may seem unnerving, travelling abroad by yourself allows you to do exactly what you want whenever you want.

Solo holidays should be embraced, but travelling alone can come with its own list of risks regarding safety and loneliness.

Here are five tips on how to travel abroad by yourself in the future.

1. Avoid the ‘single supplement’

The single supplement is something that most travellers are not aware of because most people go on holiday with families and friends.

Most rooms, suites or cabins usually have two people stay in them at least.

Some hotels and cruise lines charge solo travellers a single supplement for any losses incurred because only one person plans on using the room.

Be sure to check before you book that you will not be charged more for being alone.

READ MORE: Holidays: ‘Lifeline’ countries that should be added to safe list

3. Research your location

This is probably the most important tip for people planning on travelling by themselves.

Know where is safe, where to avoid and when amenities and shops close.

You don’t want to travel to far from your accommodation only to find out its closed.

Look at crime statistics and reviews of the local area on websites.

4. Communication

If you’re travelling alone, it’s best to tell someone you know well and trust what your itinerary is.

Flight times, hotel reservations and perhaps a rough idea of some of the sights and attractions you’re visiting may be a good idea.

It may also be a good idea to compile a list of important emergency contacts which may include your own.

To avoid feeling lonely on your trip, make sure to stay somewhere with Wi-Fi so you can easily contact friends and family for a chat.

5. Meet other people

Travelling alone is great because you have the chance to meet people you may not have glanced at if you were with friends and family.

Other travellers can offer great tips as well as support you if you find yourself lost.

Cafes and local festivals are often great places to meet other people.

Just be mindful of handing out personal information such as where you’re staying.



Blackpool Sands: Why you should visit this gorgeous Devon beach and what to do

Why should you go to Blackpool Sands?

Blackpool Sands is a Blue Flag award-winning beach, with the water cleanliness tested by the Environment Agency.

The beach is privately managed and kept its standards high, making it one of the most popular family beaches in the region.

What’s more, the evergreens and scented pines lend an almost Mediterranean air to the hotspot.

Blackpool Sands is also on the South West Coast Path which makes it a great place to start or finish a coastal walk.

READ MORE: Long Sands beach: Tips for a day at Tynemouth beach